On a dark, dark night…

This week I want to tell you something about my book Finders Keepers, An Almost Gothic Love Affair.   

You know what the elements of Gothic romance are, right?

The Gothic Romance genre draws its name from Gothic architecture, which was creepy at best. These medieval buildings usually sport underground passages, dark battlements, hidden panels, and trapdoors. They are dark and mysterious and scary. ​A Gothic romance is set in just such a place, which is often haunted. 

The damsel in distress is often trying to escape an overbearing father, only to be trapped in a situation at the mercy of the hero, an attractive, bad tempered, moody man.  

The house and its occupants are steeped in mystery, and madness is often associated with the hero. Footsteps, shadows, and other nocturnal sounds all add to the overall atmosphere. 

Finders Keepers has most of these elements - the remote, scary house at the top of a cliff, the tunnels, the towers, Gargoyles, the handsome, moody villain, the set-upon damsel in distress, the masked betrothed she only sees in the dark...  

Book Cover- Finders Keepers - An Almost Gothic Love Affair

Finders Keepers: An Almost Gothic Love Affair

I call Finders Keepers an almost Gothic love affair because, although it has most of the Gothic romance elements, it can't be compared with Europe of the time. 

This is a genre I love to read, but I wanted to write my own. So, I hummed and haa-ed, wrote copious notes, played around with the title - it started out as The Darkest Midnight In December - before the story started to fall into place. But me being me, my story had to be different. 

The big difference is that Finders Keepers is set in the British Cape Colony of South Africa in 1749, instead of the usual European/British setting. The Colony was not a place for a young lady to travel on her own, yet here was Lenora traveling from Cape Town into the interior to marry a man she has only a vague memory of, with only a coachman for protection.   

There are of course other differences that cannot be compared with British or European settings. One such difference I want to point out was their diet. On the frontier of the Cape Colony, people ate whatever they could grow.  For instance, pumpkin and tomatoes were considered pig food in Europe and England, but not so in the Cape Colony. 

Another difference was the dress code. Because of the climate, the clothes were lighter than what European counterparts would have been accustomed to.   

There are other differences, but just bear in mind that Finders Keepers is an almost Gothic Love Affair. 

Finders Keepers, An Almost Gothic Love Affair

In a time when women were disposable, a young woman is sent off into the wilderness to be married to a stranger.
The year is 1749, October 31, All Hallows Eve.

What she finds on her arrival is enough to make her skin crawl. Limping footsteps, blood-curdling screams, smoking torches, and a house on a cliff... A man she only sees in the dark, his breathing labored behind a mask.

All she wanted, was to be respectfully married, to be mistress of her own home, children - not to have her baby stolen as good as from her body!

In the words of the man behind the mask:
“A betrothal is as good as the wedding vows. You cannot leave.”
“Am I your prisoner?”
"You shall stay here until you bear me a child. Then you can stay or go, the choice shall be mine!"

The one person who might have protected her, her self-appointed guardian, Alexander Verhagen, was an unapproachable, grumpy man who didn't have any regard for her.

Her only ally seemed to be the housekeeper, and she was tied by loyalty to the master of the house.

You can find Finders Keepers, An Almost Gothic Love Affair here. 
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Spinner of ghostly yarns with a passion for romance and a touch of fantasy. Be prepared to encounter strange characters and to-die-for heroes.

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